Employee engagement is running at around 32 percent. Which means that a staggering 68 percent of staff, potentially your staff, are either disengaged or, even worse, actively disengaged. According to Gallup, this costs the U.S. economy anywhere between $450 billion to $550 billion per year.
As a leader, it's you that has the biggest impact on the engagement of your team, and your No. 1 goal should be to look to increase this, as it will have a significant impact on the bottom line of your company.
Here are five simple things that cost nothing that you can do daily to help boost engagement.
Show Your Enthusiasm
Enthusiasm is infectious, and the more enthusiastic you are, the more enthusiastic your team will be. But this needs to be genuine enthusiasm. Nothing kills engagement quicker than fake enthusiasm, and your team can see it miles away. Enthusiasm is not just communicated in your words, they see it in your demeanor and actions, they hear it in your voice, and they can even see it on your face.
Happy people are productive people, and when you are happy and smile a lot, it has a huge impact on the morale of your team. It's impossible not to feel happier when you smile--and it's contagious. When you smile, your staff will smile back, and then they too will feel the benefits. Smiling helps reduce stress, makes us feel good about ourselves, and increases feelings of positivity.
When you listen to people, it shows them respect and helps to build trust. You don't have to act on everything you hear, you just need to give people the opportunity to talk. And you never know, you might learn something valuable.
The more you communicate with your teams, the more involved they will become. You need to clearly communicate your goals: what they are, why they are important, and what's in it for them. You also need to regularly communicate progress, as this can act as a great motivator. Everyone wants to be part of a successful team, so the more you share your progress, the more inspired your team will become.
According to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, recognition is one of our primary needs. It helps build our self-esteem and feeling of self-worth. Too often, praise is reserved for major achievements only, but this fails to appreciate that it's recognition that oils the wheels of continuous improvement. What gets recognized gets repeated, so it's in our best interest to be liberal with praise.
But you need to ensure that the praise is genuine, specific, and timely. Praise costs very little, but in terms of return, the payback can be huge.
Leaders have the biggest impact on the morale of their employees. By following these five simple tips daily, you can make that a positive impact and boost their engagement.